Monday, January 17, 2011

40 is the New 30

You've probably read by now that the WWE has announced that for the first time ever, the Royal Rumble will feature 40 superstars instead of the standard 30.  If you haven't read that yet, cool.  I'm glad you're finding out here.

Reaction to the announcement has been mostly positive from members of the WWE Universe on the WWE's Facebook page.  I read a few comments about messing with a tradition and some other choice words that I can't/won't post here because this is a Rated PG site.  (Darn WWE programming)

Anyway, I've been thinking about the decision.  It always seems like in years past there's guys who have been left out of the Rumble match who could have and probably should have been in there.  Opening it up to another 10 participants I think is a good thing...

But only if they do some of the follow things...
No Surprise Entrants Winning:  In 2010, Edge won the event after returning from an injury.  And even though he won the match he didn't win the title at Wrestlemania.  And in 2008, John Cena was the surprise entrant and won the event too.  He went to Wrestlemania 24 and ended up losing too.  Triple H returned to the Royal Rumble in 2002 and won the event and the title at Wrestlemania.  My memory isn't strong enough to recall if this was a surprise entry or a scheduled return for H.  My gut tells me we're going to see him return and win the Rumble.  That's my prediction as of right now, January 17, 2011.

Don't Throw Just ANYONE In There:  Ten extra spaces shouldn't be filled with 10 jobbers.  Or jobbers to the stars I guess is more accurate.  I like it when the participants in the Rumble are guys I can buy into and believe they could win.  Should Darren Young, Michael Tarver, and Zach Ryder all be thrown in?  No offense to those guys, but really, come.  I also am not opposed to the idea of throwing in a few guys from Japan or Mexico or even ROH.  Although I don't really believe that will happen.  Speaking on this too, no celebrity entrants like Drew Carey.  What waste that was.

Title Match Losers Get Added: Stack the card so the WWE and World title matches are early in the show.  Then the two men who lose get thrown into the Rumble match too.  It's a way for them to either redeem themselves or get an automatic rematch (should the champion lose his title) at Wrestlemania.

Get Rid of the Wrestlemania Guarantee: This concept has become more than played out.  And I know with the other things I've said I'm contradicting myself.  But hear me out.  Back in the day when there weren't 12 pay per views on the calendar and there was space in between the Royal Rumble and Wrestlemania, having the winner get the title match made sense.  Now with Elimination Chamber literally weeks after the Rumble, the title picture can change so much.  Look at last year.  Edge won the RR, we assume he'll face Undertaker at Mania (again).  Then Chris Jericho wins the title at Elimination Chamber.  I don't like the hot potato game with the title.  If they planned to do Edge vs. Jericho at Mania anyway, why put the belt on Jericho just weeks before the event?  It just seemed like there wasn't a lot of planning in my opinion.

Since it looks like Elimination Chamber isn't going anywhere anytime soon, why not make the winner of the Rumble automatically qualify for the Elimination Chamber.  Then the winner of the EC match goes to Wrestlemania.  It makes the road to WM at little rougher, but makes it look like the winner worked a little harder to get there.

So right now, I'm going to get behind the idea of 40 participants (can't say men as Beth Phoenix or Awesome Kong could appear this year) and hope it's not a big cluster.  What do you think?


  1. Hey Kevin, couldn’t resist commenting on this post. When it comes to the addition of 10 extra men into the Rumble match, I can see both sides of the argument. First of all, let me say that the Royal Rumble IS my favorite PPV of the year, even friends of mine who gave up on pro wrestling long ago still have fond memories of the match itself over the years, and will never fail to come over if they know I’ve ordered it. That’s one of the reasons why I’m so surprised that they’ve changed the format of the match.. If it aint broke, don’t fix it! Now, don’t get me wrong, I’ll be fine with the change, provided they don’t mess with the format too much.. With 40 men in the match, I hope they don’t speed the wrestlers into the ring. I’m hoping they keep the intervals of time between entries the same at 90 seconds or so, at least longer than a minute. Back in ‘95 when they tried the “minute between entries“ format, it just didn‘t work in my opinion. With too many wrestlers in the ring too quickly, it felt like just another battle royal and didn’t have the special big match feel to it. I agree with all your other points completely. Why not throw in all of the wrestlers from the title matches, including the champions? At least it adds a couple more guys who could potentially win, and would create an interesting scenario if a champion actually won the rumble.. It would give him ultimate bragging rights and would put more emphasis on the elimination chamber next month as far as a challenger for ‘mania goes. Anyway, it’ll be interesting to see how the 40 man Rumble works out, and more importantly, will this be a permanent change? I mean, how do you go back to JUST 30 guys next year? Time will tell.
    Until then, keep up the good work on here Kevin, its always good to know there are a few other die-hard pro rasslin fans still out there.
    Take it easy,

  2. Hey Luke, thanks for the comment, and thanks for reading. I'm glad to hear from other fans. Enjoy!

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